From nature to fashion, red is a color that symbolizes life, power and intensity. It has also been deemed the color of love, which we celebrate next Monday with Valentine’s Day. And for us in fashion, it is the official color of Valentino.

Valentino and the color red are an iconic association, but do you know the real story behind it?

Legend has it it all started with Valentino Garavani falling in love with this shade in his time as a student, while watching ‘Carmen’ by George Bizet in the Opera of Barcelona. He immediately fell for the power and presence of the cast dressed in red, and in 1959 (the year of his first collection), he established it as the emblematic color of the brand.

The first famous dress to carry this color was named ‘Fiesta’, a tulle piece released in 1959, which was famously worn by Jennifer Anniston in 1995.

Ever since then, every single line of Valentino, Valentino Garavani and Valentino R.E.D. (clearly) has a red dress. Even his last collection as Creative Director for the brand, in the spring 2008 Haute Couture week, the entire collection was made of red dresses. Afterwards, subsequent creative directors of the brand, like the famous duo with Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli have sustained this tradition.

Red being for Valentine and for Valentino, both have symbolized different yet overlapping emotions. The common theme to both has been ‘love’: love for fashion, and love for women.